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JOHANNESBURG - South Africa’s rand was weaker early on Tuesday, hurt by a stronger dollar which benefited from rising U.S. bond yields.

At 0610 GMT, the rand traded at 12.4100 versus the dollar, 0.6 percent lower than its close on Monday.

The dollar index rose more than 0.2 percent against a basket of major currencies.

The rand slipped late on Monday after setting a three-week high against the dollar late last week.

The South African currency has been led by external factors in recent weeks, but market attention this week is focused on local unemployment and retail sales data.

Unemployment figures for the first quarter are due out on Tuesday, with retail sales for March on Wednesday.

Investors will scrutinise the data for signs that an economic recovery has built momentum since President Cyril Ramaphosa’s election in February.

Government bonds were also weaker in early trade, with the yield on the benchmark instrument due in 2026 up 6 basis points to 8.400 percent.

South Africa is scheduled to hold a bond auction later on Tuesday. 

-REUTERS